In Week 1, quarterback Dwayne Haskins proved he is the leader in Washington.
The Washington Football Team was faced with a tall task in Week 1 of the 2020 regular season. A team that went 3-13 (second-worst record in the NFL) in 2019 was forced to face off with the team that won their division of the NFC East that same year, the Philadelphia Eagles.
Now, things did not start off great. Washington quickly found themselves in a 17-0 hole. The offense looked even worse than expected (and most expectations weren’t too high). Meanwhile, the defense was supposed to be the exciting part, and they looked completely lost.
Momentum started to shift late in the second quarter though. A Fabian Moreau interception set Washington up in short-range with just 1:37 left in the half. Dwayne Haskins then took his team 45 yards in 57 seconds going 4-for-4 for 45 yards and a touchdown on the drive.
Washington was then down 17-7 at the half. It’s a nice start, but far from enough to push the momentum completely. What they needed was to build on that momentum at the half. And that starts with a good response in the locker room.
Usually, at halftime, you would call on your head coach to make a speech and get the players going. Ron Rivera was currently unavailable though. The head coach was undergoing IV treatment as he battles cancer.
So someone had to make a speech and rile up the troops. And it ended up being Dwayne Haskins. The 23-year-old quarterback that many felt needed to mature after last season.
Dwayne Haskins is taking up the mantle in Washington in year two.
Well, it appears he did just that because Haskins was the one to call his teammates to action. And apparently it worked. Not only were there some glowing remarks about his speech and leadership, but Washington responded.
They went out and won the second half, 20-0, finishing the game on a 27-0 run and toppling the defending NFC East champs in Week 1.
Haskins’ numbers weren’t spectacular. He completed 17-of-31 passes for 178 yards and one touchdown while picking up 17 yards on the ground as well (and that’s with a couple of kneel-downs at the end of the game).
The major factor there, though, was that the quarterback did not turn the ball over. He made some big passes and did what he had to do to get his team the win. Oh, and he formed himself into one of the leaders of the team while doing so.
See, it’s one thing to play a solid game. It’s one thing to get your teammates fired up. It’s another to put it all together though. Haskins saw his team needed a spark. So he capitalized on his defense getting him the ball in a short field situation right before the half.
Then he saw his team was still down 10 at the half, and with his coach unavailable Haskins took the lead and fired up his teammates. Finally, he backed up his words. After making the speech, Haskins led his team out onto the field and helped get them 20 more points, and beat the defending NFC East champion Eagles.
Dwayne Haskins is far from perfect. But so is the Washington Football Team. They are both young, exciting, and learning on the job. And they’ll grow together. We now know that Haskins is ready to be a leader, and Washington is welcoming him into that role with open arms. Things could get very interesting in the Nation’s capitol this year.
Dwayne Haskins is one of the main leaders of the Washington Football Team. Get used to it, because he could be here for a long time.